WELLINGTON (Agencies): In a significant move for wildlife conservation, New Zealand unveiled its inaugural hospital exclusively dedicated to treating kiwi birds. Situated in Kerikeri, three hours north of Auckland, the purpose-built facility is a response to the rising numbers of the once-threatened national bird.

The Department of Conservation confirmed that this specialized kiwi hospital, initiated by the local conservation group Kiwi Coast, is the first of its kind in the country. The rehabilitation center, strategically located in the Northland region with a brown kiwi population of nearly 10,000, addresses the need for enhanced care due to the increased kiwi population.

With approximately 26,000 brown kiwi now thriving in the wild across New Zealand, a thousand more than in 2008, when they were deemed “Nationally Vulnerable,” the species has been reclassified as “Not Threatened.” The growth is attributed to the efforts of conservation groups, predator culling, and education programs for dog owners to prevent attacks on these flightless birds.

The new hospital, run by volunteers, provides crucial veterinary facilities and isolation pens to ensure the well-being of the kiwi patients. Named after a rescued chick named “Splash,” the hospital treated its first patient even before the official opening. This specialized care center aims to treat injured or ill kiwis for up to three months before releasing them back into the wild, contributing to the overall health and preservation of the brown kiwi population.

As the tide turns positively for the brown kiwi, conservationists emphasize the importance of sustained efforts to prevent any potential regression into a threatened status.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Translate »